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Can Soy Intolerance Cause Villous Atrophy?
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7 posts in this topic

Intolerances suck. But I always assumed that even though they sometimes cause similar reactions as gluten, that they do not cause the same kind of damage to the vili as does gluten for people with Celiac disease.

 

However, I'm doing a little research, and turns out there's some evidence that intolerances to dairy/soy/corn/etc might cause villous atrophy. Anyone else know about this? (There have probably been similar discussions before, but new info/research is always good

 

Here's some stuff I found regarding soy intolerance:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/987760

not the full article, but here's a study of infants with dairy intolerance who also showed vilous atrophy when they ate soy. Hmmm

 

This info was based on the study, about soy intolerance:

http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/932026-overview

"Small-bowel atrophy has been documented in different studies. The degree of villous atrophy may be similar to that found in celiac disease"

 

I didn't have a biopsy before I went gluten-free, and my bloodtests (done about a year before and just before going gluten-free) came back negative, but Celiac runs in both sides of my family. I'm self-diagnosed, but have always considered myself Celiac. However, I also have dairy and soy intolerances. I had a biopsy last fall to check of any problems, and they did see some mild gastritis but, not surprisingly, no villi damage. I hadn't eaten gluten for 4 years, and cut out dairy and soy the year before.

 

The big question from all of this is, if other foods can cause the same damage as gluten, then a: is this why a lot of people don't get better on the gluten-free diet alone, and b: could negative blood work but a positive biopsy when testing for celiac actually show damage from something other than gluten, or as well as gluten?
So, theoretically, if someone was still having problems a couple years after going gluten free, doing another biopsy might not be a bad idea to check for villous atrophy that could be caused by other proteins. Has anyone ever done this? Of course, seeing more damage still wouldn't tell you what's causing it, but could be proof that another intolerance is wreaking havoc on your gut.

 

Anyway, any other research, thoughts, etc would be helpful. All very interesting stuff.

 

Cheers

Peg

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I am a type 1 diabetic and have a first cousin who is also type 1diabetic and has celiac disease.  My HLA typing is DQ2, which also puts me at increased risk for celiac disease.  Over the last 12 years, I had unexplained iron deficiency; and over the last several years, I lost quite a bit of weight.  Several years ago, I switched from whole grains to just brown rice suspecting I might have celiac disease or gluten intolerance.  One year ago, I had antibody tests and a biopsy which turned out to be negative for celiac disease.  The biopsy did show a few lymphocytes, but nothing diagnostic.  That being said, if I ate any food containing gluten, I would develop GI distress--so I continued with the gluten free diet, but the weight loss continued.  Several months ago, I found a publication indicating that apple juice of all things could worsen inflammatory bowel disease.  Interestingly, for the last 33 years, I've used apple juice to treat low blood sugar.  After finding out about apple juice, I switched to blueberry juice.  And having made this change, my weight now appears to be slowly moving into an uptrend.  So the bottom line is that other foods can cause inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract--especially if you have a genetic predisposition for a particular gastrointestinal disease, be it celiac disease or inflammatory bowel disease.  As for whether or not you should have another biopsy, I kind of wonder if you take a closer look at what you are presently eating whether you might find some other food or foods that may be continuing to cause gastrointestinal problems for you.

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Oh, I'm definitely not running off to have another biopsy. I know that gluten/soy/dairy is bad for me, and having to eat them again would be, well, not good.

I was just curious whether anyone else had seen further research/evidence, etc.

 

Apple juice is extremely high in fructose, so much that it's really not that good for you. Glad the blueberry is helping.

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Oh, I'm definitely not running off to have another biopsy. I know that gluten/soy/dairy is bad for me, and having to eat them again would be, well, not good.

I was just curious whether anyone else had seen further research/evidence, etc.

 

Apple juice is extremely high in fructose, so much that it's really not that good for you. Glad the blueberry is helping.

The publications on soy appear to stem from (ie: caused by) soy protein isolate--not soy beans per se.  That being said, if you have an allergy to soy protein, you should definitely avoid soy beans.  As for the problems with dairy, they extend way beyond dairy.  In the United States, cows and chickens are fed grains rather than grass, resulting in the production of fats which are rich in omega-6 fatty acids, which in excess can cause significant inflammation.  Whereas 100% grass fed chickens lay eggs with a balanced omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio of about 1:1, grain fed chickens lay eggs with an omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio of about 20-30:1.  Similar results are found with grain-fed cows (beef), cow milk, chickens, and grain-fed ("farm-raised") fish such as tilapia.  An excellent book with literature references for these findings was written by a physician with brain cancer who used his knowledge of nutrition to keep his cancer at bay for many years:  "Anti-Cancer:  A New Way of LIfe" by David Servan-Schreiber, MD, PhD.  Just Google the title and you'll find the book available through Amazon.com.  I highly recommend it.  You will more than likely get a lot of information about the foods and food derivatives you are consuming which may be adding to any problems that you may still be having. 

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NutritionGuy, I heard this doctor on a radio program quite a while back. Can't remember now if it was People's Pharmacy or some other NPR show. It was so interesting. It sure seemed that his nutritional choices kept him alive much longer than if he had just kept eating the way he used to.

 

Also, I've got to ask you based on your name and the knowledge you seem to have - are you a nutritionist or a dietition, or maybe even a doctor? Whichever or none of the above, welcome to the forum and thanks for your input!

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Bartful:  I have a very strong strong scientific background.  That being said, most of what I am posting is based on personal experience as well as my knowledge of the scientific literature.  As for David Servan-Schreiber, I only came across his book by accident, and I was very profoundly influenced by what he wrote.

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I am off soy in any and all forms.

I've heard about some people reacting to eggs/meat from grain-fed animals, but never noticed any difference myself.

 

In any case, still no more info on whether or soy or other proteins (casein, corn...) could cause villous atrophy in the same way that gluten does?

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